Driving through downtown San Francisco has always been hell (good luck getting across Market Street). Traffic has gotten worse with job growth and the advent of ride-hailing apps like Lyft and Uber. Could congestion pricing help? San Francisco is studying whether to charge people who drive through some of the busiest parts of the city. New York City decided it will introduce congestion pricing in 2021. Could San Francisco be next? It’ll be a hard sell since we love our cars. But desperate times in the Bay Area call for desperate measures.
Guest: Dan Brekke, KQED transportation editor
Highlights of Dan Brekke’s interview:
On congestion pricing as a way of getting cars off the street, as an alternative to expanding the roadways:
“That's simply the idea of placing a price -- charging a toll -- for driving in certain parts of the city… So you would you would charge a toll for cars entering, and possibly leaving, those areas. Anybody who's making a private car trip would have to pay for the privilege of doing that. You know, it requires a shift in thinking to look at roads as a finite resource that access to is actually sort of a privilege, not a right, for everybody to just drive on with no cost.”
On traffic woes around the nation: